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Key Capitol Hill Hearings

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Detroit 17, New York City 11, Leahy 10, Illinois 10, United States 9, Nelson Mandela 8, U.s. 8, America 8, New York 6, Leahy Law 4, South Africa 4, Clinton 4, Michigan 4, Guantanamo 3, California 3, Massachusetts 3, Lantos 3, Pat Leahy 3, Patrick Leahy 3, Nih 2,
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  CSPAN    Key Capitol Hill Hearings    Series/Special. Speeches from policy makers  
   and coverage from around the country. (Stereo)  

    December 6, 2013
    10:00 - 12:01pm EST  

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you get diagnosis the on the level of observable symptoms. we began to really put some real details that these are circuit disorders. and how do we bring together our understanding of the brain, understanding the complexity of human behavior to be up to help people with these, located disorders in a way that is lasting and allows them to recover and function fully in this world? [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] for: thank you very much being with us here on c-span. thank you to dr. collins and the entire staff and management at nih for allowing us to check in with the research that they are doing and the impact of sequestration and some of the innovation ahead for nih. you can get all the information online anytime at nih.gov. fork you for being with us
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this friday edition of the "washington journal." we're back tomorrow morning at 7:00. check out our schedule information on our website at c- span.org. have a terrific weekend. >> president obama yesterday ordered flags at half staff and honor of nelson mandela. he was in prison nearly three decades. -- he willly became be buried in his ancestral village on december 15. following yesterday's news,
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president obama delivered a .tatement at the white house >> at his trial in 1964, nelson mandela closed saying i have fought against white domination and i have fought against white -- i've cherish the ideal in which people can live in harmony. it is an ideal i hope to live within to achieve. it is an ideal for which i am prepared to drdie." nelson mandela lived for that it real. he made
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today he has gone home, and we have lost one of the most influential, courageous, and profoundly good human beings that any of us will share time with on this earth. he no longer belongs to us. he belongs to the ages. through his fierce dignity and unbending will to sacrifice his own freedom for the freedom of to transform south africa and move all of us. history from a prisoner to a president embodied the promise that human beings and countries can change for the better. his commitment to transfer power and reconcile with those who example thatnd an all humanity should aspire to, whether the lives of nations or our own personal lives. the fact that he did it all with grace and with humor, and the
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ability to it knowledge his own imperfections only makes the man that much more remarkable. , "i am not aid saint unless you think of a saint as a center who keeps on trying. trying." i am one of the countless millions who drew inspiration from nelson mandela's life. my very first political action, the first thing i ever did that involved an issue or policy or politics was a protest against apartheid. i would study his words and his writings. the day he was released from prison gave me a sense of what human beings can do when they are guided by their hopes and not by their peers. -- fears. like so me around the cloak, i cannot imagine my life without the example that nelson mandela set. as long as i live, i will do
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what i can to learn from him. family,elle and his michelle and i extend our deepest sympathy in sharing this extraordinary matter with us. as life and work took him long way away from those who love him most. i would hope that the time spent within the last few weeks gave comfort to his family. to the people of south africa, we draw strength of the example of renewal and reconciliation and resilience that you made real. , at peaceth africa with itself. that is an example to the world. legacy to the's nation that he loved. we will not likely see the likes of nelson mandela again. canalls to us as best we
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for the example that he set to make decisions guided not by hate bye-bye love, -- but by love, to never discount the difference that one person can make, to strive for a future that is worthy of his sacrifice. for now, let us pause and give thanks for the fact that nelson mandela lived, and man who took and bentn his hands the ark of the moral universe towards justice. may god bless his memory and keep him in peace. >> the labor department released the november jobs numbers showing the economy added 200- 3000 jobs last month and dropping the unemployment rate
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year 7.3% to 70%, a five- low. the economy has generated just over 200,000 jobs from august to november, up from 159,000 per month between april and electorate -- and electorate reaction coming from capitol hill. house speaker john beat -- house speaker john boehner release a statement -- today's report includes positive sign that mored discourage calls for emergency government stimulus third and said, what our economy needs is more progrowth solutions that get government out of the way. we will bring you live remarks from kentucky senator rand paul speaking at the detroit economic club at 12:35 eastern right here on c-span feared also life during the 12:00 our on c-span2, discussion on hospital admission policies for medicare patients and how that impacts out-of- pocket expenses at 12:15 eastern. also at 12:15 on c-span3, for presidentialan
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candidate john huntsman and evan bayh will speak about politics. they are cochairs of a group called no labels. again, today at 12:15 eastern. you can feed on c-span3. -- you can see it on c-span3. >> i am a combat vet. i served in the navy for seven years before i was medically retired. i contracted a terminal lung of these in iraq. i also crushed both of my hands, parts of my hand and had to have my hands rebuilt. i am 100% disabled. i can no longer work, and my life expectancy down is probably less than two years. my husband is my primary caregiver. i don't need anything from the va any longer. my comp located claim took four years to adjudicate. not once enough for years that i
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ever present one single piece of new evidence. the entire claim was submitted fully developed in its entirety before it was even -- before i was even discharged from the navy. i am here not to represent my .laim or my issues my husband and i are here to make sure that this panel and that everyone that will listen to us will understand that cases like my own and unfortunately not mrs. mcnutt's are isolated. i personally have dealt with at justtime almost 1000 cases in the last six months of veterans and their spouses and children who are dealing with complex claims that are being denied over and over and over again or being lowballed. span, this weekend on c- the house veterans affairs subcommittee hearing on dealing with the va's backlog in processing disability claims.
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watch saturday at 10:00 eastern. on book tv, taking stock of the grand old party. late saturdayh night just past midnight at 12:15 a.m. american history tv, 50 years ago as a nation grieved for a lost president, lbj step from vice president to the oval office sunday at 3:00. randi weingarten president of the american federation of teachers, spoke about the report. she spoke about the efforts to improve education. hosted by the christian science monitor. this is just over one hour. >> our guest is randi weingarten, president of the american federation of teachers. this is her first visit with the group. she got an early look at the
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joys of helping children learn since her mother was a teacher. she earned degrees from cornell university and a law degree from cardozo school of law. she worked at a wall street law firm for several years. she taught history in brooklyn while serving as counsel for the president of the united federation of teachers. she served as president for 12 years before her election as aft president in 2008. that ends the biographical portion of the program. as always, we are on the record here. please no live blogging or tweeting or other means of filing well this is underway. there is no embargo on the breakfast. our friends at c-span have agreed not to air video of the session until one hour after the breakfast is over to give reporters time to file.
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give me a nonthreatening signal and i will call on one and all. low on the subtleties scale, but nonthreatening anyway. the nonthreatening is what i'm concerned about. we will offer our guest the opportunity to make some opening comments and then we will move to questions around the table. thank you for doing this. >> first of all i just want to say thank you for all of you for being here. and thank you for letting me engage in this give-and-take with everyone. can you hear me? i am an asthmatic. when i am sitting instead of standing, i have to actually really use my lungs. it is an interesting -- i riff on that a little bit, because it is interesting when i start
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talking about things like wraparound services and health services, i know from my own teenage years that the days i was having a hard time breathing, i was having a hard time in school. the days that i could actually breathe well, i was more focused. when i start talking about things like wraparound services and health services, it is very primal to me. today, it is the day after pisa day. i am sure that most of you filed some stories about pisa and the sky falling. i saw a lot of good reporting under the numbers, and i want to thank all of you for that. we've been through this rodeo before. it is the third or fourth time that pisa results have had some
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real combustion in the united states. having that data is really good. what does it say that the united states is pretty much in the middle of the pack for mathematics and science for the first time in 10 years. it has two or three things. number one it says that things like poverty, social economics matter. if you look at the state like massachusetts and connecticut that the well, and what they've done, and you look at the data when you pull it out and try to account for poverty, you see where the statistics are. but there's more to this. if you just stop there, we are in the inane debate that we have
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been in for the last 20 years. the issue is not whether poverty matters, but what can we do about it? the dominant educational strategy that we've done about it for he last 10 years is "no child left behind" and "race to the top." that has been the dominant educational strategy. there've also been charter schools in competition and new standards, but that is the hyper testing, the sanctioning of teachers. that is the dominant strategy. what we have learned from the last set of results is that that strategy does not work to move the needle. it keeps us where we are, but it is not what works to move the needle. that is when you start looking at what are the other countries doing that allow them to outlast
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p us? what do they do? i and not suggesting that we be similar. i am not suggesting that we should be finland or shanghai. but the united states is different and we have to look at some of the things that they have done and say, can we adapt that here? let me explain for things and then i will go to what we are trying to do to accomplish that. >> you have four minutes more. >> that is ok. number one, the countries that outcompete us, they actually really value, deeply respect and value public education. the pisa results -- i'm saying that to my friends at the "examiner," they have a big caution flag about the data.
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it is important to look at, but they have a big caution flag about choice and competition. that has increased segregation and poverty. in countries like chile, who have used it at the dominant education theory. number two, they are preparing teachers, supporting teachers, giving them time to collaborate. as tom friedman has seen in shanghai and has written about. number three, parents are really engaged. they are really engage not just in terms of being told what to do, but they are very engaged. number four, the common core matters. standards matter. but they must be done the right way, not just thrown out there and told to go do it. it must be implemented well. you see that in countries that outcompete us. last -- poverty matters, but we have to lead with equity investments and equity strategies in order to address that. things like prekindergarten, like wraparound services that is
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what it says. the bottom line is, what do you do about it? there are a whole bunch of groups, including our union and other groups. a group of community partners, parents, who actually started talking about this for the last two or three years. we have what we call now the "principles for unity." we plan to reclaim public education, not as it is today, not as it was 50 years ago, but to be something that fulfills our collective responsibility for individual opportunity for all kids. that means, doing things such as having well-prepared teachers. if teachers are well prepared and if they are supported, and if they still cannot do their
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job, they should not be there. but we should have fair of evaluation systems. we also have to have standards. i am a big believer in the common core, but they have to be implemented right. we have to do what california has done. delink testing for the time being so we can actually prepare and try to make these work. number three, we have to focus on poverty and how we ensure that kids have a level playing field. the pre-k programs, the wraparound services that we need to do, and every school that works, every district it works, we have to focus and make sure that those schools are welcoming, safe environments. welcoming, safe, and collaborative environments. you cannot show me a school that works or a district or a state or a country that works where the notion of collaboration as opposed to competition, the
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notion of a welcoming, safe environment so that schools are central to the community, are not the dominant theory as opposed to testing and sanctioning. that is what we are trying to do. work with communities, solutions that are aligned with what communities need. we must rate neighborhood schools and try to make sure that public education is a hallmark of democracy and a propeller of our economy. most importantly, we must really make sure that we figure out how to enable all kids to have the opportunity to not only dream big, but achieve them. >> thank you. let me ask you one or two and then we will go to kimberly to start. let me ask you about the common core standards.
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you said you think that obamacare is bad and the implementation of the common core is far worse. who is to blame and anyone stepping up to fix this? >> i am not a big believer in blame. i am a union leader and i could easily say, this one, this one, this one. if we are not rolling up our sleeves and actually engaging, then we are in the same debate over who cares about kids. i care about kids, no, i care about kids. that is a debate we are having. let me just say, this is what i think is happened. we do education policy by press release.
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i think the governors and the state chiefs will write about saying, let's figure out a set of standards that are aligned to what kids need to know about the global economy. they move pretty fast about it. we were engaged with them and brought a lot of teachers who critiqued the materials and things like that. that is what matters. the public was not involved, parents were not involved, districts were not involved. it felt like, because of the speed at which it went, and because the federal government incentivized through the race to the top -- it became toxic. as it starts rolling out in a lot of communities and a lot of states, a person like john king will stay to districts you must implement. but new york state has been through a tax cap.
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a lot of other budget cuts. the things that teachers actually need to do, work together, use the standard as a guideline not as a straitjacket, have curriculum, method not happen. in a couple places it did, in a lot of places it did not. the big mistake that both the federal government made and and other people like king made is the level of testing -- king would say to you, i was sick and tired of telling people what to do and then not doing it. that is not your job to tell people what to do. your job is to help navigate people through this again actual ship. consequently, last year in new york, there were in elementary schools these tests. a lot of people were not prepared. john king and meryl tisch said
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the test results would be 30% less next year than they were right now. the question is -- how did they actually know the exact number? it creates huge distrust. you can actually figure out what the cut scores were and how to align it. between the lack of preparation for teachers, the lack of communication with parents, and the sense that you are using the data, using the kids' data, and you know exactly where the scores will come in. this year, what has happened is that because people did not fail the test, they do not have enough funding for actually real implementation. the state put something called "engage new york" on the state website. some of the stuff is really good. some of it is not. if you go to a teacher, think about it. if you say, here's the website and here are 500 pages, just do it. it is a huge instructional
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shift. it is not about wrote memorization, but critical thinking, helping kids persevere, helping kids get through it. that is why there are a lot of ways of saying that it was not done in a way that teachers trusted. parents really embraced it, and you have to think about this is a huge new instructional shift. >> kimberly? >> do you anticipate that labor will come out early? >> look, hillary clinton is someone that my union has supported for every single a job that she is either run for or sought. when she ran for senate in york state, we were out there and very supportive.
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when she ran for president in 2008, we were out there in supportive. i think it is far too early to talk about any of this. the last i heard, she had not even decided whether she was running or not. i think it is too premature. frankly, there's is a lot of work we have to do between now and 2014, 2015. we are spending our time trying to figure out how to reclaim the promise of public education and figure out how quality health care is something that all americans have and getting through the ups and downs of obamacare. i'm glad we fight is working -- the website is working better now. we need to work on affordable college, making sure there is retirement security for all. there is a lot of work to do the
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between now and 2015, 2016. >> i would like to get your thoughts on what happened in detroit yesterday. i am curious what you heard from your members in michigan about their concerns on their pensions. i am curious about the effects beyond detroit. >> i think the ruling is very troubling morally and if i put my lawyer hat on, which i do occasionally, i think it is wrong legally. obviously it will be appealed. let me talk about why i think it is wrong morally first. the pensions and the benefit plans are deferred wages. whether you look at the people in detroit or the people in illinois because we have also seen the illinois state
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legislature basically hugely cut pensions in the last 24 hours as well. what pensions are -- people actually pay into their pension. in detroit, in illinois, people have paid 9% per year. 80% of those do not have social security. this is their only retirement security. in detroit, the average pension is about $19,000. as i said, people contribute to it. what has happened is that the deferred wages that people expected to get and need very much for retirement security, all of a sudden they do not have at a period of time when they cannot compensate for it.
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what happened in this country is that as people are getting older and older, instead of having more retirement security, we have retirement insecurity. i heard people at the aarp joke that the new name for retirement is to get a job. if you are in your 70's or 80's -- and if you are in the sandwich generation like i am where you're paying for your parents or paying for your kids my sister and i every month give my father a check. my father worked as an engineer and had very little retirement security because of that. he got laid off at one point or another and the pension that he has is very meager. we give him a check every month to try to make up for that. what does this mean now? globally or in united states of
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america, the average amount that someone has saved if they are the breadwinner, meaning between ages 45 to 64, is $12,000. not $12,000 annually, but they have essentially $12,000 in and their social security. what are we going to do about this 10 years from now? what are we going to do about this as a country in 10 or 20 years from now? what other countries have done is that they actually made retirement security a collective responsibility as a post to an employer responsibility. what we're seeing is that fewer and fewer people have it, not more. that is why i think we have a huge moral issue. the legal issue, the banks in detroit were able to work out what they needed to work out before the bankruptcy.
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it is the people of detroit who served in detroit who are now subject to the bankruptcy. the people who actually created some of this recklessness were there deals out beforehand. that i think is both a moral and a legal issue. one of the issues that this ruling raises is about the federalism, about the import of contracts being inviolate under the u.s. constitution. that is why i'm saying there are a bunch of different issues here. i am really troubled by it. we cannot have a race to the bottom in this country. austerity, austerity, austerity. trickle-down economics. they do not create a growing economy. the new pope has spoken out about this.
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when our country had a burgeoning middle class, it was because we had a shared prosperity. >> how many members you have in detroit and how many you have in illinois? >> i could if -- i'm going to give you a very rough guess. in detroit, we have about 3000 to 4000 members. in michigan, we have about 15,000 members. in illinois, we have about probably about somewhere around 40,000 members. maybe 50,000 members. >> 19,000 members? >> that is the average retirement that someone gets.
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the average retirement that a public employee gets around the country is about $24,000 to $26,000. every time anyone spends a dollar of their pension, it creates two dollars in change in economic output in the community. are we going to have a progrowth, pro-investment, pro- middle-class economy? or are we going to keep having this trickle-down austerity economy? that is the real question here. in both places there is going to be a lot of lawsuits. the last thing i will say that illinois this as well, and why i
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think illinois in particular is political as opposed to economic. last year, the unions in illinois, led by the illinois federation of teachers, the unions in illinois actually negotiated with the state senate a pension package that created roughly the same amount. that package went nowhere. instead, this one, which is actually taking -- remember what i said about most of these folks have no social security. this is now basically cutting annual cost-of-living increases that retirees had going forward. i am sorry, the illinois number is about 100,000. >> we will go to another question. your hand signal is so subtle. we will go to you after this.
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>> on the same subject, do you have an idea of some other countries and their collective responsibilities on retirement? everyone is worried about social security crashing and a lot of people will be left by the side of the road. what would you do? >> i think two or three things. we have done this report. the aft did a pension report a few years ago. employees have to take a share of retirement responsibilities. we agree that we have to pay into our retirement. most of these plans that you see that have been cut right now, it is because the government took a pension holiday. this happened at the very same
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time as the crash on wall street because of all of the budget cuts. you have that double whammy going in at the same time. employees have always paid in and done their responsibility. right now in america, we have a three-legged stool. we have social security, whatever your personal savings may be, and i would argue for a defined pension plan. there is a group of people, there is a group of people, from people like kkr who have invested in a modest pension funds in wall street, and retiree advocates who are getting together and talking about how we should have more professionally managed funds like those plans. they are actually far more
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efficient and more effective than the defined contribution plans. if i could change the world, i would actually de-link pensions from employer responsibilities. when an employer has that kind of legacy clause, like when you have right now in terms of the public sector. in the absence of that, we have to figure out how to actually help people. we have to help them get to a certain percentage of their income when they are working that they have in retirement. so that they actually could be able to live a life in retirement that they deserve. >> like the national 401(k) program? >> we can expand social security. frankly there'll be more and
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more of a push toward that as people have more and more retirement insecurity. some of us are looking at whether some of these big, defined-benefit plans that states have, can you do with australia does? people can actually then buy in or participate in. it would be more efficient. it will be a more effective way of doing things. we have to have a national conversation about retirement security. if we do not have that conversation right now, what is going to happen in 10 or 20 years from now? 80% of the population does not have a pension. at the same time, what we have said in this report, and we can get you this report, is that people should pay into their pensions.
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there should be this three- legged stool. i will be happy to get it to you. the last thing we do, and this is something i've spent a lot of time doing, is that there is about $1.5 trillion worth of pension investments that are sitting in wall street investment houses right now. what happens if we could actually use the patient capital of pensions for investments in infrastructure? for building america again, for creating jobs again? we have been working with the clinton global initiative and with many of the teacher funds to do this. we made a commitment about two years ago to cgi that we would
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find $10 billion worth of assets to do these kind of investments. we are halfway there. there is the new york city systems have invested in infrastructure. health warning systems have done the same thing. we have also done retraining for the jobs of tomorrow. we have also done a whole bunch of work in terms of energy investments. there are a lot of things you can do with this patient capital in terms of reinvesting in the infrastructure. >> we are going next to sean higgins. >> one of the issues that has up in the detroit bankruptcy issues is a collection that is valued in the billions. some people have suggested selling that off.
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as an educator, do you support that, or what are your thoughts on that? >> let me just say that the educators in the city have been under a different kind of emergency manager for a long time. the governor had the first emergency management statute, but it was done in a much more it was done of a lot of conversation back and forth in terms of the educators. frankly, our members in detroit have hugely sacrificed in the last two contracts in terms of taking pay cuts and other things amounting to roughly about 10%. the city school system is working with the educators now. there've been a lot of problems. this new emergency manager has been working with the educators. they are seeing some real
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turnaround. i want to give them props in terms of what they have done and what they're trying to do. i grew up in rockland county. 20 minutes away, or 30 minutes away depending on traffic. i watched new york city roughly go through the same agonizing process and make different decisions. they could've made a decision to declare bankruptcy, but they did not. it could've made the decision to sell great assets, but they did not. it made the decision, including
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the unions, the user pension funds to help by city bonds -- it made a decision for the long- term viability with lots of sacrifices through the 1970's. that decision, if you think about what is going on in new york city right now, this is a city that -- it oozes life. there is a vitality now that you do not see in the rest of the world. watching the detroit decision, one has to wonder when you look at michigan, and look at the inequities in michigan, with the great wealth and certain pieces of it, but what is happening in detroit? i do wonder why these decisions are being made this way. detroit can be a jewel in that state.
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i would caution against selling the kind of assets like that art collection. >> let me shift from money to life in the classroom. the problem of bullying continues to grab headlines. we have had so many high-profile and tragic cases. we have seen school districts acknowledging the reality of these cases. the expense of the programs they have to institute, what are your members' feelings on these issues of what needs to be done?
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is there a federal bullying legislation needed? >> i am a big believer in trying to figure out policy that works as opposed to simply some kind of top-down policy is going to sit on the books and people are going to look at it as a mandate and do nothing about it. i don't think that answers your question -- let me start this way. i'm gay. and i have had lots of -- i never talked about it for a very long time. then i started in the middle of 2007, 2008 and i talked about it
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at the shul that i was in. i talked about it publicly for the following reasons. after i talked about it from the pulpit that one day, i had some would seem to me teenagers, young women, come up to me, pull my sleeve, this is 2007, and say to me crying, thank you for coming out. thank you for being a role model. thank you for showing me that i can be who i want to be. i expected that when i grew up in the 1970's, but 2007 is not 2013 where it is cool to be gay. it is not as if -- it was -- you didn't have to be closeted at that point in many ways.
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certainly in new york city you didn't. that said something to me, it said more of a bullying than anything else in my life. it said that the fear of being yourself is something that we actually really have to be mindful of every single day that we teach. that is the same for teachers and it is the same for students. the question then becomes, what do you do to actually help kids not have that fear or that anxiety? and then what you do with the bullies? we have learned a lot. we have learned -- the bullying movie that was put out, i thought it was extraordinary. the first issue is education, education, education. and intervention, intervention, intervention. and having the funds for things like conflict resolution in schools and teaching teachers how to see it.
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we need to have funds for intervention. some of this is stuff that we can do. some of this is stuff that we have guidance counselors and social workers in schools to enforce. some of this is how kids see a trusting adult. as part of our intervention at aft, we have rubber bands. ours is purple and says "see a bully, stop a bully." the latest research seems to suggest that if you confront a bully and tell them to stop, most of the time that will work. we have to educate and we have to confront and we have to actually pay attention to the
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interventions for both those who are bullied and those who bully. to that extent, we need the policy to make that a reality. but if the policies do not happen, it will be worse. we have worked with the administration about this. we are big promoters of the bullying movie. we have worked with the rfk foundation about this. we have worked with the cartoon network, we have done a lot of that stock. the second piece of your question, in terms of teachers. let me just do a paen to teachers. we are in an odd place in the united states of america. you see this in terms of kids as well. teaching is so respected in other places.
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we are physicians of the mind. we are unlocking a future for kids. yet we are still in a space where we get demonized and denigrated. somebody is attempting to split the union from teachers. why is that the teachers are more densely organized than any other employee in the united states in america? because they see that it is difficult for them. we need to do a better job as unions to make sure that our members are mobilized. when you take surveys of teachers these days, you see the line going upwards in terms of them wanting a voice. we need to stop the de- professionalization, as well as the tools they need. if we are really to believe that they are poor.
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teachers are getting piled on a and piled on. any new idea -- just throw it at teachers. when they say, i cannot do this and the 500 other things you've asked me to do, then people say that is an excuse. we cannot do that to them. i have watched it in the schools, in a charter school. we cocreated the new york. it had some of the best scores in new york city in the last grading. it had higher grades than many other schools. what happens in that school? we did a different kind of contract. we have a great relationship between the teachers and the principles.
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we have great teachers and great principals. they get paid more. they do not have a set day, but they have a set number of classes. they actually teach the same material every day. they actually get to spend time at night thinking about, deeply, what they are going to teach and how they are going to teach. the performance consortium schools have gotten a waiver that they give only one of the regions in new york city. they are focused on project- based instruction. when you talk to the teachers and the kids in the school, they have persistence in college rates that could not be about. off.uld knock your socks 90% of hispanic kids who
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graduate from the school attend college. 85% of the african-american kids who graduate from the schools stay in college. they are doing project-based learning. they are creating real engagement between kids and teachers. when you talk to the teachers, the teachers stay. they do not have the 50%, 80% attrition rate, and they talk about how important it is to actually teach, and you see the collaboration. >> we have about 15 minutes left. we will go to melanie, and several others. >> the administration is having a labor-management partnership summit this month, and i am wondering what you think the biggest obstacles are to achieving this, particularly when it comes to organizing and reaching collective-bargaining contracts, and what needs to be done over this? >> well, i think austerity, austerity, austerity, austerity, austerity has really poisoned a
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lot of environments because -- thank you -- but that is a whole other topic. but i also think that we don't in america -- we are more into john wayne than john dewey. john wayne gets the headlines, not john dewey. you take a place like abc school district in southern l.a. county, even through austerity, it has done extraordinarily well. actually, that is how i got to the solution-driven unionism. they solve problems. and what they have done is they have done this through the transitions of a retiring superintendent and a retiring union president. so this has really become baked into their culture. we have talked about this story
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to you guys a lot, and nobody wants to write about it except in orange county. the same in terms of cincinnati, new haven. there are places -- montgomery county -- there are actually places where through thick and thin, when people have real respectful relationships with each other and they start thinking about how they solve problems rather than arguments, you see real collaboration and you see real working through a bunch of issues because teaching children is complicated. so arne duncan, i give him a lot of credit. he wanted to do this management collaborative, but you actually have to change the culture to make this the norm, not the exception. and that is what i think we need. now, this one we are focusing on the common core.
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so every interested party has an interest in focusing on that. but it has to be about not what the next reform is, but really how we help students success. >> i have a double-barreled political question. you mentioned it is too soon to talk about 2016. what is your focus for 2014, governors, congress, whatever? and you mentioned the warren plan. do you think this liberal populist direction for the democratic party can win elections outside of massachusetts, and is this an active debate for the democratic coalition now? >> ok, so when you poll the public on things like education, jobs -- people want good jobs. people want the american dream.
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if you look at doug selznick's recent blog post, which i think was not in "atlantic" but in "politico"? sorry. i think it is totally right that one of the great unifying factors in this country was if you work hard, and play by a set of fairness rules, you should do ok. and our guidepost was -- are our kids, the next generation, are they doing better than we are? that has changed. and people are really anxious about that. they want to work hard and they
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want to do ok. so i think there is -- when i looked at the elections, in 2013, chris christie won in new jersey, that is true, but so did minimum wage expansion. terry mcauliffe won in virginia, walsh in boston, deblasio in new york. toledo, the person who was pro-public education -- >> could you speak up? >> sorry. the person who was pro-education won. so there is something going on in the country that is about, yes, working hard. nobody wants a handout. but let's level the playing field so we have great public education and we have ways for people to enter or reenter or re-envision themselves. you may call that populism, but frankly when you hear pope francis start talking about that, too, i think we have had a
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lot, a lot of years of trickle- down economics and austerity- based economics, and it has not turned the country around. so this level of populism, progressivism, i think, is something that people are yearning for. so we will see, but i don't see that the republican party, at least in terms of the congress, i don't see that it is getting lots of hugs and kisses from people around the country. i see there is a lot of anger and a lot of anxiety that our lives are fundamentally different than what we thought they would be. so this notion of shared prosperity, investments in education, investments in infrastructure, and trying to figure out an economy that works for all i think is important. take tomorrow, fast food workers.
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100 places where the fast food workers are going to be staging strikes. and who are the fast food and who are the fast food workers now? it is no longer an 18-, 19-, 20- year-old kid trying to get into college, or in college and doing this is a job. when you go to mcdonald's, when you go to walmart, you are seeing people in their 60's and 70's. this is wrong. and so i think there is a sense we will see. but in terms of my ballywick, public education, on december 9 there will be over 60 events, 60 cities, counties, towns, and more coming every day, of parents, community groups,
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clergy, our union foundations talking about how to do bottom up reform, solution reform, community-based reform that actually helps kids be more successful in schools. so we are seeing this community work and this bottom-up organizing in public education, as well as in economic issues. job issues. >> you mentioned that we should not have a race to the bottom in this country. with what we saw in detroit, does that raise the specter because other cities could resort to bankruptcy court to get out of pension promises they have made to workers? and, secondly, how do you put this in a broader perhaps context of the fights that labor has fought in recent years with collective bargaining and pensions and perhaps the erosion of the social contract that other employees have enjoyed,
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which has been part of the deal for decades, and whether that is being unraveled? >> i think you are seeing ebbs and flows of this. in 2010, if you asked me that question, i would have quite a different answer than i have now. so, i mean, what i have seen around the country is some places like california actually start righting its economy. they passed a budget amendment two years ago, and you're seeing a huge change in terms of the california economy right now. they actually -- jerry brown took the opposite direction and said let's have a pro-growth, pro-worker, pro-public education strategy for moving our economy along.
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you are seeing the same thing in some ways in massachusetts. you are seeing it in maryland. so you're seeing some states make different choices. i think what has happened in detroit is a disaster. and i think it is a disaster because when you have a city go into bankruptcy, what does that say to the rest of the country? what is that saying to the people who live in th city right now? as i said, new york made a very different decision 30 years ago, in terms of a city as a public good, not a private entity. the private assets. it is a public good. so -- but the other question that you raise, which is the most important question, i think, is that it is an american value that if you work hard and
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play by the rules, the promises that have been made to you will be kept. and the unraveling of that social contract is an unraveling of the democracy, the lockean democracy in america. and that i think is very, very, very troublesome. and particularly right now, when you see this huge disparity of income, where wall street hovers around 16,000, the highest it has ever been, yet you have the greatest income disparity that you have had well before the great depression. so not a surprise, but the labor movement, people are taking another look at it. they are saying we actually need to have a collective voice. the number of people in labor has actually gone up this year. my union is actually growing.
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>> would it be growing without the nurses? >> well, we are the second largest nurse union, and have been organizing nurses for about 20 years. >> i mean, is the teacher portion growing as well? >> even with what happened in wisconsin and what happened in indiana, the teacher piece has stabilized. and that is after 300,000 teachers were laid off since the great recession. so i'm not giving you as succinct an answer as i would like, but people realize they need a collective voice. what we are doing in my union and with the afl-cio made the centerpiece of their convention is that union needs density. we cannot be islands. we have to be about making sure there is economic opportunity,
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there is educational opportunity for all the people that we serve, that there is good public services, that there is good public education, that there is affordable higher education, and that there is quality health care. and that is our mission. you look at our mission statement, that is our mission. that is what we focus on every day. and when you do that, you are lifting -- >> we will do the two last questions with carolyn and dan. >> what do you see in congress in terms of education laws, either major ones or smaller things? >> the first thing i would actually like to see in congress is comprehensive immigration reform. i mean, if you look at what the senate did, there is a path there that a lot of people
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compromised on to create a path to citizenship plus ways of making sure that we take people out of the shadows, we grow our economy, and we make sure our borders are secure. and so first and foremost, the house of representatives needs to focus on that. and i was part of the fast for families yesterday. i have been arrested on the whole process of trying to get to immigration reform and whatnot. in terms of education, this is an issue. pre-k is an issue about showing whether results actually really matter and what the research actually really matters or whether the congress lives in an evidence-free zone. we have seen pre-k actually works to help level the playing field.
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the president has put a bill out there. the house of representatives actually have a bipartisan bill, that aligns in the house of representatives and the senate, the miller-harkin bill, that has two republicans from new york state. i give them huge props for being part of it, hannah and grim. that pre-k bill should sail through. if people wanted to make a smart investment, that bill should sail through but for the ideology of what the federal government should be spending. and what is sad about this is states like oklahoma, you know, have shown us that pre-k really works. so we are fighting for it. i don't really know what its prospects are. i don't feel as hopeful as i wish -- you know, as the evidence should dictate.
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but we are fighting, fighting, fighting for that pre-k bill. number two, i think we could see a bill about career tech ed. i think we could see a perkins reauthorization. i think this is one of those examples when you actually see business, higher education, k- 12, and labor coming together like you did around peak tech. the peak tech schools that ibm in new york city, the colleges in new york city, the new york city department of education, and our union actually put together. it got a lot of attention because the president mentioned it in the state of the union, then the president went to see it, but this is a fantastic school. it's a school where ibm has back-mapped from what the entry
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position, the skills required for the entry position in ibm is, and we have put a six-year program together that also is aligned with the common core critical thinking, and everybody, you go to the school, everybody loves it. so it is actually helping re- envision what career tech ed should look like in this new economy, and frankly, there is a lot of really great career tech ed schools throughout the country. toledo has one that is a terrific school, that has been aligned with gm. aviation high school in new york city, aligned with the aviation industry. transit tech in new york city. so i think there is some steam and a headwind that could actually push perkins through the gate, but it has to be formulaic. meaning we have to have a
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formula funds, no more competitive grants. you cannot keep doing winners and losers in the nation when all communities really should have high-quality career tech ed. >> last question, mr. thomason. >> it seems to me, at least, that, like politics, education is pretty local. and today's teachers do you think are trained well enough to handle situations like zero- tolerance policies that are so bizarre that produce incredible incidents and bad publicity, kids being held up and suspended for childish things that are completely out of the norm, the lack of parental involvement in the inner cities producing what we have today, because there are not any parent sometimes. they may be grandparents, but that is about it. how do you deal with those kinds
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of things on a local basis? it is all well and good to talk about national policy, but they don't really deal with what this is about. >> so one of the -- look, i often close my eyes and think about what it was like to be a student, what it was like to be a high school teacher in crown heights, brooklyn, what it was like to be a local president before i answer any of these questions. because you are so -- you know, the policy from 30,000 feet is really different from the reality in a schoolhouse, and a -- in a schoolyard, in the school hall. and so those experiences are the hard connections to make. but in your question, you actually answered the complexity of what to look education is.
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we are the first responders to poverty. we are the first responders to all of the social issues in america, and we don't actually our educators, whether they are the bus driver, the school secretary, guidance counselor or teacher, they never get even in the good times the training and the support that they pretty much need to deal with all of the situations that we confront. but in the times of austerity and privatization and hyper- testing, that is why they are so demoralized. but this is the amazing thing about schoolteachers. people go into teaching because they want to make a difference in the lives of children. and if we actually honored that heart connection, if we honored it and used it as the value it is, it is invaluable. then we could turn a lot of these things around, because our job, whether a child has parents or one parent or has
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their grandparents, our job is to help all children succeed to their god-given potential. that's our job. that is part of the reason why it cannot just be our job. and it has to be a team unity -- a community responsibility. and that is why we actually focused on this whole notion of reclaiming the promise and this notion of focusing on not just teachers, as important as they are, and also the wraparound services, engaging curriculum about critical thinking, but also having things like music. so that is why we talk of lot about wraparound services, not just health care services, but breakfast, lunch, and dinner. one of the worst things the congress is doing right now is cutting the snap program. so when half of your kids in
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public education, half of our kids come to school poor, they are poor, in the south and the west, it is more than half. i'm a big believer in we have to be the best we can be as school teachers. you heard what i said before. that if somebody cannot teach, they should not be there. he have to prepare teachers like finland prepares teachers. we have to value them like singapore and china and canada value them. we have to actually have the common core, but do was right. delete testing, at least for a while, but also make sure we have art and music and the tools teachers need to help. we have to have parents involved and engaged in welcoming, safe, collaborative environments, and we have to have the wraparound services because we are the first responders to poverty. and whether that is breakfast, lunch, and dinner, like i saw at the school in cincinnati, or whether it is what we're doing at mcdowell in terms of really wrapping services around all of
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these schools in the eighth worst county in america, when you do those things, schools succeed. and more importantly, the nation succeeds. thank you. >> thank you very much. appreciate it. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [indiscernible]
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[indiscernible] a live picture from capital hill where hillary clinton will make a statement about human .ights
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live coverage starting in a half an hour. also coming up live today, kentucky senator rand paul speaking at the detroit economic club to talk about jobs. eastern. be at 12:45 a discussion on hospital admission policies and how that expenses.t of pocket live coverage starts at 12:15 eastern on c-span2. 3,d on c-span bipartisanship and politics. yh willtsman and evan bah speak. vet.am a combat i served in the navy seven years before i was medically retired.
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lungtracted a terminal disease in iraq. i am 100% disabled. i can no longer work. and my life expectancy now is down to less than two years. my husband is my primary tear giver. i do not need anything from the v.a. any longer. claim took four years to educate. not what's in that time did i ever present one single piece of new evidence. eight d and -- the entire claim was presented in it entirety before i was discharged. i'm here not represent my claim were my issues. my husband and i are here to make sure that this panel and that everyone that will listen to us will understand that cases like my own and, unfortunately, not mrs. mcnutt';s, are
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isolated. i've dealt with almost 1000 cases just in the last six months of veterans and their spouses and children who are dealing with complex claims that are being denied over and over and over again or being lowballed. >> this weekend a subcommittee hearing on dealing with the in processing disability claims. on book tv, taking stock of the grand old party. scarborough, late saturday night, at 12:15 a.m. 50 years ago, as a nation grieved for a lost president, lbj stepped into the oval office. sunday at 3:00. hillary clinton speaks about 12:50rights in about
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eastern. we will bring you her comments. speaking yesterday, patrick for guantanamo bay to be close. the vermont democrat talk about the u.s.'s use of drones and failure to sign the international land mine treaty. >> please come in and make your way to your seats. one of the things you will learn about human rights at this summit is what an amazing ward we are blessed with, and it is my pleasure to introduce another of its members, jim sigler. jim has had more than four decades of experience in public policy, management, finance, law, and academia, and he is no stranger to historic moments.
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he started his law career as a clerk to harry blackmun during the 1972 term. that is when blackmun wrote the landmark roe v wade decision. nearly 30 years later, george v bush appointed him commissioner of the ins, weeks before the attacks of september 11. he served as assistant secretary of the interior in the reagan administration and as sergeant at arms at the united states senate. a was present and ceo of technology company and now is a senior fellow at the migration policy institute, where he focuses on u.s. immigration policy, border security. as a board member of human rights first, we have been incredibly blessed with his wisdom and expertise, which have been invaluable to us in navigating complex lyrical challenges. please join me in welcoming zigler.ember jim sig
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kindank you for that very and generous introduction. pleasure andcular honor for me today to introduce our keynote speaker, senator patrick leahy from the great state of vermont. a particular pleasure because i consider pat leahy to be a good friend, and yes, for all of you out there are who are doubting thomas's, it is possible for republicans and democrats to be friends in washington today. i did not say it was easy. i said it was possible. it is a special honor to introduce senator leahy because he is a real honest to goodness champion of the cause i think that brings all this are today,
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and that is human rights for everyone everywhere. in fact, i think without reservation and i suspect everybody in this room will agree, that there is no greater champion for human rights in the u.s. congress that our friend patrick leahy. , indeed, hisd historic and heroic work to advanced human rights is frankly too extensive for me to go into detail and give him a chance to talk also. i will talk a little bit about two or three of his large publicy -- accomplishments. i want to mention that i had the opportunity on a personal level assee his work up close, and senator leahy knows, the sergeant at arms of the senate has to keep an eye on these guys. i have observed him up close and i can tell you as commissioner if you choose to
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ignore pat leahy on an immigration issue, you do it at your own peril. i can tell you senator leahy does a lot of things that are below the radar screen that make a big difference in the lives of a lot of people who would otherwise fall through the crack's. he is not a show horse. he is a workhorse. been a longtime leader in the international campaign against land mines. in 1992, he authored the first bill of any government anywhere to ban the export of these very horrible weapons. in fact, he spearheaded the effort in congress to aid victims of land mines by creating a special fund known as the leahy war victims fund, and that fund has now on an annual basis provides about $12 million of aid to the victims of these
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horrible bombs. in 1990 seven, senator leahy sponsored historic legislation appropriately known as the leahy law which prohibits the u.s. department of state and department of defense from providing military aid to foreign military and police forces that engage and violate human rights. and he never stops leading on an issue central to our mission at human rights first, and that is refugee protection. he is the chief sponsor of the refugee protection act, which would eliminate useless hurdles that prevent persecuted refugees from receiving safe haven. at human rights first we have also teamed up with senator leahy to fight for counterterrorism policies that respect human rights. in 2009, he called for the
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creation of an independent commission to investigate our own government's use of torture in the post-9/11 era. unfortunately, that has not come to pass yet. senator leahy has a strong record of success because he is both a determined pregnant just s isan idealist who' less interested in making a statement and making change. he is willing and able to work with republicans on human rights and a bunch of other issues. he and senator rubio are in the process right now of trying to get the reauthorization of the trafficking the m's protection trafficking victims protection act. i will share a secret. pat leahy is now the longest- serving u.s. senator and he is president probed him of the senate. however, do not tell him that, because he thinks, and i think all of us in this room know that
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it is true, that he is just getting harder and. youes and gentlemen, i hope will give a warm welcome to our keynote speaker, the honorable hetrick leahy. leahy.ick >> thank you. jim, thank you all. thank you for that wonderful and not totally deserved introduction about but i will accept it. zigler is one of the finest private service i have known in either party, and i told him when he came in here, when he was sergeant at arms, he
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set the gold standard for everybody else to follow after that in doing it for the best interest of the senate, not in a partisan way, but in the best interest of the senate. it is great to see him. we get a chance to get caught up on our connections to vermont, and most people do not realize a name like patrick leahy, my mother was first-generation italian americans, so we know some of where our relatives are from. and human rights first board members who all made this possible. i think what you are doing is so important. in some ways, we preach to the converted here, but i have long been an admirer of human rights first and the committee for human rights before that. what you do every day helps all of us. your research and advocacy has certainly been at extremely
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important to some of the legislation that i have tried to pass. topics.alk about a few you, do noting stop, keep doing what you are doing. ismay seem obvious that this the central purpose of this summit, but it needs to be said. we are here because each of us feels, each of us feels her spots ability to defend the fundamental freedoms and and principles that define our humanity that are universal, but which are often violated and denied by the government's hoosier spots ability is to protect them. we know in the history of the united states we have seen groundbreaking human rights leadership and we have also seen some tragic failures. the bill of rights -- what a
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monumental achievement -- it inspired the universal declaration, and the freedoms that we find even today in many ies'constitutions. the advances that we have seen regarding rights of people with disabilities, lb gt communities among these are examples of what we can coverage if we persevere what is often long-standing prejudices. i am encouraged by recent efforts in congress to further helprt those who need our with improvements we made to the violence against women act, the trafficking victims reduction act, and recently we have a congress so far in the senate in a comprehensive immigration reform. i might say the area we are talking about, the senate, i am so pleased that you are going to be honoring my friend bob dole this evening.
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thes there when bob was republican beater in the senate -- republican leader in the senate that, a man with dignity. his leadership and passage of the american disabilities act more than two decades ago -- would have not have happened without senator dole's leadership. it is a great milestone in the human rights history. it is a tireless effort to cdi states -- the united states to ratify a tutor. if we had horse leaders like senator dole, leaders who are leaders who are ready to put aside any differences as they to try to find common ground for the best of the nation, then we would all be better off. frankly, i miss leaders like that in both the senate and the house. while we are complimenting ourselves and let's not forget a
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lot of examples where the united states fell short of the ideals we saw in our declaration of independence, the internment of japanese citizens are in world war ii -- that is really that this merges our history, or the segregation laws that were upheld for years by our u.s. supreme court, or the fact that we have been unable to close guantanamo or two and mass incarceration. the bright lights of our history. in fact, if you -- few days go by when we are not confronted by significant challenges to our standing as a global leader on human rights. some of these challenges are due to external forces, due to our own doing and our own mistakes. 1997, i wrote what became known
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as the leahy law. at that time i had no idea what impact it might have. teresa is with us today, try to explain it, and maybe he is right. i did know that we should no longer provide training and equipment to foreign security forces that abuse and murder innocent civilians. you would think this is something that we could easily all agree upon as americans. it happened many times where we had given aid to a country, they use that eight to more -- to murder and torture their and citizens. that was wrong. a contradicted everything this country stands for. it also undermined our standing as a global defender of human rights when people could say look where you're -- what your age is doing in this country. whicher the leahy law, would cut out that aid, it is probably the most effective tool we have for drawing a clear line
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between the united states and those who commit atrocities. but also, providing an incentive for foreign governments to hold abusive military and police officers accountable. but while it has been the law for a decade and a half, some haveials in our embassies not enforced it rigorously, and i call on our state department to explain the leahy law as the leahy law is as the leahy law, and it has to apply in every or ity where we give aid is turning our back on american ideals. -- let'st enforcing it start enforcing it everywhere. [applause] do not give me an excuse that somehow we will make it better if we keep giving aid to the people using it to torture. no. that file eight rating that we stand -- that file it's everything that we stand for as americans. if you're going to implement the
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leahy law, you have to have the ,ctors sustain arch is patient -- sustain purchase a patient, and everybody in this room. we should feel just as strongly about defending human rights activists, whether they are in egypt or russia, sri lanka, china, vietnam, or any other country, who are persecuted for peaceful expression or association, or their religious beliefs. these are rights that we granted, ande for writes in which we take great pride. we should not hesitate to speak up when those rights are violated anywhere. our country or anywhere else. i have met activists, as many of you have, who have been subjected to brutality, isolation, torture, and i got to tell you, i am awed by their courage and spirit by the fact you never give up.
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we have a responsibility to support them, and when they are imprisoned, this is something democrats and republicans setting aside party labels and join together and work for the release. here at home, we have yet to fully recover from the effects of the 9/11 attacks. we continue to mourn the horrific losses, the innocent lives lost that day. we do remain vigilant against the threat of future attacks. but as americans, we should not ignore the damage done by some of the ill-conceived practices and policies put in place after 9/11. before 9/11, i doubt if any of us could have imagined the torture, something members of congress in both parties have oppressiveused by governments that would be defended by top u.s. officials as a loser but it practice in --
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as a legitimate practice in the 21st-century first century. we should never allow torture by our country to be cloaked in euphemisms like enhanced interrogation techniques or did --ed by twist twisted legal analysis that goes contrary to the moral core of our country. and we should put an end to the indefinite detention of suspected enemy combatants and the use of flawed military commissions and open-ended, ill- defined global wars on terrorism. we have spoken out so many times about indeterminate detention in other countries. how can we justify it in our own? frankly, there is no justification. [applause] i feel -- i have said this to
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various presidents -- that the indefinite detention of prisoners at guantanamo has contradicted our most basic principles of justice. it has degraded our international standing as a champion of human rights, and rather than helping our national security, it has actually harmed it. countries that respect the rule of law and human rights do not do not lock away prisoners indefinitely without trial and charge. we condemn those countries who do it. he should not authorized it in our own country. . i am heartened that incremental this year'sh -- version of the senate authorization bill. we have to make sure that guantanamo is close. i greatly appreciate human advocacyrst's
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including guantanamo. let's remove this plight. let's remove this blight. [applause] and continue your work on oppression of drones. i think drones can be used in armed conflicts, but only in accordance with international humanitarian law. the united states for years conducted lethal operations using drones in pakistan, afghanistan, yemen, some of which have killed or when -- or wounded innocent civilians. i remain very concerned about the lack of transparency surrounding these operations. and the alleged use of signature strikes, it raises a very serious question whether drugs comply with international humanitarian law that we joined in. pressure,tinue this
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for the rest of the world, including other countries that have terrible human rights records, we ought -- what we need is to be as transparent as possible about them, and whether they are used following international law. i would suggest here today and maybe it is time to look again at international law in this area, and maybe it is time to have some tightening of it and some changes in it. i for one would like to see that. hesitate tonever criticize foreign governments that allow heinous crimes to go unpunished or that punished peaceful attrition of their fundamental rights. so too i criticize my own government when it feels up to live -- when it fails to live up to the standards. let me use one area.
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i think of the international and i banning land mines, think of the continuing trend of innocent civilians becoming victims of war, because the vast majority of people who were harmed, it injured, killed by land mines are not combatants. their innocent civilians, children, parents, others. there is no land mine treaty to ban the use. every single nato country save one,as signed it, and that the most powerful nation on earth, the united states. that is not the leadership i expect from my government. w bush, andrge obama, the administration has not joined and have not joined and has isolated the united states on this issue, and i asked what kind of message this worldto the rest of the
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in this lack of leadership. we ought to just sign it. we spend hundreds of millions of dollars in move -- in removing landmines around the world. helpe the leahy fund to landmine victims around the world. what are we afraid of? leahy lawhave another that says we cannot export land mines? let's show the courage. it only takes a little bit, to go for it and sign the treaty, like every one of our allies has done. is that so difficult? now, in conclusion, let me tell you, on november 22, we remember the great losses entry suffered 50 years ago when president kennedy was assassinated. as i drove down here, i , as aered my wife and i young law student, watching the cortes go by, hundreds of thousands of people on this
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street. it was so silent, you could hear rums when the cortège left the white house, that far way. you could hear the clicks in the street like when they change. you could hear the horses and up drums as they came pennsylvania avenue. i've been thinking about that a lot in the last few days. my wife and i have talked about it and what it talked about -- and what it felt about, to youngsters standing there, and i thought of one of the many markers president kennedy set in his memorable inaugural address. he spoke of the willingness to witness the undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed and to which we are committed today and around the world. that is what john kennedy said in that inaugural address.
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years since then, i believe his words are more relevant today. i would argue one of the most important things we dicould do for our country, as he asked to do back then, is continue to reaffirm and uphold that commitment and in doing so we help the rest of the world. frankly, the american people expect no less. my children and grandchildren expect no less. so keep on, keep on working on this, and i will be there to fight with you. thank you very much. [applause] >> see this discussion anytime on our website, www.c-span.org. we had live to capital hill for -- to capitol hill for comments formeretary -- by secretary of state hillary
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clinton. >> hillary tubman risked her life to guide slaves to freedom. harriet said, if you hear the talks, keep going. if you see the porches in the woods, -- the torches in the woods, keep going. if they are shouting after you, keep going. you not adverse. -- do not ever stop. keep going. if you want a taste of freedom, keep going. she wasance over -- now the one with tears in her eyes. we are here today to recognize hillary clinton and to thank her for her determination to always keep going. freedom,ng journey for equality, human rights, and justice for all of god's children, and, hillary, we are
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following it behind. thank you. [applause] >> at this point we would like to invite my grandmother and secretary albright to come forward. we stand and join me in congratulating the recipients of the 2013 lantos prize for human rights, hillary rodham clinton. [applause]
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[applause] [indiscernible]
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>> if there is one message that echoes for us at this time, let aree that human rights women's rights, one and for all. [indiscernible]
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♪ it does not matter what country you live in, your leaders are, even who we are, because we are human, we therefore have rights, and because we have rights, are charged to protect them. ♪
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no one should be forced to remain -- for fear of religious or political persecution. when human rights are violated. >> caring for others to be human. universal,s are [indiscernible] ♪ [indiscernible] are cropping up -- [indiscernible]
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[indiscernible] these actions contravene the rights --act of human [indiscernible] all human beings are free and
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equal -- [indiscernible] [applause] >> that was so good. oh, my goodness. >> brava! >> thank you. thank you very, very much. thank you. thank you, and, first, to the extraordinary lantos family, this is indeed a great honor,
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and an immense personal pleasure to have tom lantos around my neck. [laughter]he was often in my asking meon the phone what i was going to do about something or offering to partner with me on an issue of human rights. and as all of you who are here no, because you recognize the significance of the work that he career.ng his public he was a man of great courage and compassion him and he had a wonderful partner in his wife, and that him and a fabulous -- annette, and his fabulous support system with his daughters and their family. we should give a round of applause to the entire lantos
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family here today. [applause] when the proceedings began, it was said we meet on the day after the loss of a giant among who by the power of his example demonstrated unequivocally how each of us can choose how we will respond to those injustices and grievances , thosehose -- grievances sorrows and strategies that afflict all of humankind. elson mandela will be remembered for many things. he will be certainly remembered , his dignity, led
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his extraordinary understanding, not just of how to bring democracy and freedom to his beloved south africa, but how important it was at he first -- how important it was that he first brought freedom to himself. as i spent time with him, starting in 1992, until just in half, i wasr and a always struck by the of his self- depth awareness of his to live ahard it is life of integrity, of service, but to combine within one's self the contradictions he lived with
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-- a lawyer and a freedom leader, a prisoner and a , a man of anger and of capturedss -- has so the hearts of people, not only in his own country, but as we are seeing with the outpouring of response to his death people around the world. i only hope that as we devote -- as we both mourn and celebrate the passing of this universally recognized and beloved figure that we remember he became that through an enormous amount of hard work on himself. the story has been told several times now in the coverage that i have watched of his passing
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about how he invited three of his prison guards to his inaugural festivities. i was there is a part of the american delegation for the inauguration, and i was there at the luncheon that was held back on the grounds of the president's house that had transitioned from the morning where i had breakfast with klerkent the clerk -- de to lunch that i had with president mandela. as he looked out, to the large gathering filled with dignitaries from everywhere, including people who had been part of the struggle itself against apartheid and who had supported that struggle, he made the point of thinking -- of thanking his jailers and pointing out of all the distinguished vip's who were
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there, he was most grateful that these men with whom he had recognitionrds of and acknowledgment of the other humanity over the course of that long imprisonment could be there as well. as we think about nelson mandela, it brings to mind very much to me tom lantos, because seenwere two men who had the worst that humanity can offer. , --had been object of hide objective five, the night there right to be a jew in hungary during the holocaust or a black man in south africa during the
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apartheid. to come every reason embittered, cynical, believing that for the rest of their lives the only thing that powermatter was acquiring , being able to demonstrate their influence, especially as against those who had denied them the right to be who they were. . .